Hoptical Illusion - Blue Point Brewing Company
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Ratings: 1,497 | Reviews: 591 | Display Reviews Only:
3.45/5 rDev -7%
On cask at Pizza Plant Transit it was a unique IPA, and long bitterness gave depth and character to taste. Much more drinkable than bottle review below:
Bottle: An average IPA. Astringent bitter on palate, found it hard to finish bottle which is not true for 95% of IPAs I have had. Some acidic orange flavour but mouth puckered too much, needs more malt. Mouthcleansing and lingering dry taste like a listerene, will not seek out again.
My rating is based on the cask.
10-16-2005 03:19:02 | More by Sammy
3.78/5 rDev +1.9%
Reviewed from notes.
Pours a slightly-darkened golden color with a fairly nice white head and some lacing. Nose brings some grapefruit rind and a bit of pine hops along with some sweet caramel malt. Taste leaves the hops back a bit and focuses more on the malt, although there is a restrained bitterness. Feel is light to medium with good carbonation. Pretty good IPA.
10-16-2010 12:11:19 | More by Thorpe429
3.9/5 rDev +5.1%
A: The beer is clear golden yellow in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high dense white head that died down but consistently left a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: There are light aromas of citrusy hops in the nose.
T: Like the smell, citrus flavors from the hops stand out in the taste, although these aren’t quite as prominent because they are subdued by caramel flavors and hints of sweetness from the underlying malts. There is a light to moderate amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is very easy to drink because there is a good balance between the hops and malts.
04-28-2011 02:02:37 | More by metter98
4.1/5 rDev +10.5%
Sparsely speckled kumquat with a handful of slow moving bubble streams leading up to an ivory colored head of semi-rocky foam. Even with indirect lighting, the color is more radiant than most. It's also a good lace maker, as evidenced by several thick bands on the upper portion of the glass. Subsequent pours result in thick sheets at mid-glass.
The nose is nicely hoppy, with an Anglo-American character that is definitely more American than Anglo. The brewery (in keeping with the mystical, mysterious nature of the name and the label) will only say that this beer features 'a rare hop'. Why the secrecy? It smells like a combination of orange and pink grapefruit to me. Whatever it is, I like it just fine.
Hoptical Illusion isn't a tongue destroyer of an IPA, but it is a respectably hoppy, flavorful one. Malt is in the background and features no caramel flavors that I can detect; the better to allow our 'mystery hop' to shine. And shine it does. Each sip brings loads of bittersweet hoppiness in which sweet, juicy orange is slightly more prominent than bitter grapefruit. On the palate, I get no hint of Englishness whatsoever.
This really is a friendly sort of IPA. The hoppy bitterness will satisfy even the most hardened hopheads among us, even as the malty sweetness will allow most others to enjoy it as well. My definition of a balanced IPA is likely to be skewed pretty heavily to the hoppy side of the malt:hop equation, but this, to me, is a balanced beer.
The mouthfeel is a few notches more full than medium thanks to the firm malt backbone. There's a 'just right' amount of stickiness on the finish that allows every nuance of the wonderful flavor to be appreciated long after the beer has gone to points south. Equally impressive is a lively, although still well-behaved, feel to the carbonation.
I've heard very little about Blue Point BC, but if this beer is any indication, these guys know what good craft beer is all about. Hoptical Illusion is a delicious IPA and I've enjoyed every last, mysterious ounce.
02-06-2006 16:38:06 | More by BuckeyeNation
4.03/5 rDev +8.6%
Appearance: A really bright amber color provides the base for a two-finger head; plenty of sticky lace action
Smell: Sugar-coated grapefruit esters
Taste: Shortbread malt flavors are quickly shuffled aside by the citrusy hops, with both bitterness and surgary sweetness building by mid-palate; floral and citrusy, after the swallow, with perhaps a hint of apricot
Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation
Overall: A very quaffable West Coast style IPA; perhaps a bit to sugary for my palate, but still a good example of the style
02-05-2012 18:57:06 | More by brentk56
3.63/5 rDev -2.2%
Bluepoint Hoptical Illusion - 6.8%
Had at Lititz cask ale festival 10/29/10
Golden color with off white head. Super fresh hoppy aroma, also notes of citrus and pine. Sweet citrus hoppy flavors with a little carmel and earthiness. Very flavorful and balanced. Crisp mouthfeel, but not as drinkable as your average fresh ipa.
11-01-2010 18:33:43 | More by acurtis
3.48/5 rDev -6.2%
Blue Point's Hoptical Illusion is a strong flavored IPA that shows a firm malty taste and feel to balance the deeply resiny hop bitterness. Effortless and zesty to taste, the beer carries enough punch to appease the most dire hop head.
While pouring a hazy copper or bronze color, the beer builds a substantial head of ivory white foam with very solid staying power and leaving classic pockets of lace behind.
Deep aromatics of caramel and hops weave together to create a zesty citrus notion of oranges and grapefruit. Bready and somewhat yeasty, the beer also has the scent of freshly mulled grasses and herbs.
Strong flavors of malty caramels and sweet breads balance against the sharp citrus flavors of orange zest, bruised tangerines, and white grapefruit pith and pulp. As the session develops the beer turns hop forward and introduces the earthy and resiny bitterness of grasses, herbs (somewhat oniony an garlicy) until the biting taste of pine resin grips the throat in finish and reducing the malt flavors to a subtle support.
Firm textures of creamy maltiness resists a fade to dryness until late in the taste and keeping the beer a bit more balanced than is usual for IPAs. Alas, the hops prevail in bitterness, dryness, and mild grassy astringency in finish and provide a long resiny bitterness in aftertaste.
Hoptical Illusion is a substantial IPA that balances better than most- problem is that IPAs shouldn't be balanced; they should showcase hops and suppress malt flavor and feel. The hop profile seems muddled as to not show independent and tangible character. A drier beer, less sweet, and simplified hop profile would surely improve.
03-24-2012 16:07:12 | More by BEERchitect
4/5 rDev +7.8%
Poored a deep amber, copper, w/ a one finger head wich settled nicely, fine lacing throughout. Smell and taste both lived up to the name! Smell came through strong piney, with citrus overtones, very fresh smelling. Tatsed AWESOME.. Grabbed you right away with the fesh pine taste and lingered for a good bit, almost begging you back for more. Very smooth and highly drinkable, if I had more access to this I could be in trouble! Overall highly recommended, excellent hop bomb!
03-29-2011 01:35:06 | More by mikesgroove
3.13/5 rDev -15.6%
My lower than normal rating comes from the water-ed down taste of this IPA. On the broad IPA spectrum this beer is trying to be something it is not. The hop flavor may be apparent to a non-beer drinker but to IPA lovers, it leaves more to be desired. Perhaps that is why it was created however the taste is lacking though the mouthfeel is comfortable unlike many IPAs, likely due to its "lighter" taste.
06-24-2011 00:52:56 | More by kylehay2004
3.53/5 rDev -4.9%
This poured out as a clear looking copper color with a foamy white head on top. The lacing of this beer is pretty good. The smell is nice a hoppy with a decent malts undertone. The taste of the beer is a crisp and bitter. The mouthfeel of the beer is smooth and dry. Overall this beer is a pretty good IPA. I feel that this beer is a pretty good choice if you're looking for something thats a little more hoppy than some regular IPA's out there.
11-16-2011 01:49:12 | More by Knapp85
4.1/5 rDev +10.5%
Pours a deep burnt orange with big fluffy white heat that leaves nice sheets of lace behind as it settles,fresh hop aromas dominate very piney with an underlying herbal/grassiness made me wanna jump in.True to form this is hop driven very resiny and piney and quite dry and very fresh tasting.A slightly sweet caramel maltiness keeps this somewhat in check but this ale is most definently a hop bomb,a damn good east coast IPA glad to try it.
09-25-2005 00:01:20 | More by oberon
3.55/5 rDev -4.3%
Label notched "APR" but no corresponding year. I'm guessing it's fresh since it just showed up in the area.
Pours a light gold, hazy with suspended sediment. White foam leaves a little lace as the glass is sipped. Head retention is ok, a ring and bare skim across the bottom 1/3 of the glass.
Floral aroma, with some underlying pale malt. Gently hoppy without getting into punisher territory. Some grapefruit rind or zest comes out as the beer is tasted and smelled again. Mild hops in the taste, bitterness is low to medium. Balanced and malty, it has a supple and ligtly creamy mouthfeel.
Stopped after one, it was a fine IPA, but i'll probably still stick to my local favorites.
04-11-2008 02:12:02 | More by emerge077
3.95/5 rDev +6.5%
Appearance: Pale, clear and golden with a dense two finger head with decent retention.
Smell: Predominantly hoppy with overtones of orange and lemon. There's a touch of pale malt present beneath the hops, but it's nothing overbearing.
Taste & mouthfeel: Citrusy hops up front with a nice biting bitterness. Moderate malty sweetness hits the middle of the palate, but it's subtle - the malt profile is pretty clean. Light-bodied, perhaps a bit watery; I'd like more of an oily hop character. Finishes bitter and dry.
Notes: Got this one from wolfsblood - thanks. This is good stuff that I'd bet is better on draft.
09-03-2008 01:02:31 | More by largadeer
4.33/5 rDev +16.7%
Blue Point's Hoptical Illusion (contract brewed at Clipper City in Baltimore, MD) delivers a clear, peachy-gold body beneath a decent-sized head of bright white foam that dwindles to a wide collar and keep a whispy surface covering over most of the surface. Additionally, it leaves lacing with every sip, but it just can't seem to stick. The nose, however, is more impressive with a bounteous amount of sweetly fruity (tangerine, grapefruit, peach ... Simcoe?) and subtly piney hops. It's crisp in the mouth with a fine-bubbled carbonation and medium body. The flavor adds some lightly sweet and subtly biscuity malt to its already impressive hop arsenal; and it's backed by a solid-but-restrained bitterness that dries it in the finish while still retaining a good deal of drinkability. The alcohol never appears until you go to get up from your seat; and some nice spruce-like hop flavor lingers in the aftertaste. Quite nice!!!
06-06-2005 22:04:30 | More by NeroFiddled
4.43/5 rDev +19.4%
On-tap at Pitchers Pub in Cumberland, RI, served in a US tumbler pint glass.
A: The beer is a light amber, with a thin white head that fades quickly and leaves a decent lace on the glass.
S: The strong aroma is all hops and citrus.
T: The hops are no illusion in this beer. Nice, heavy hops burst grabs you right away, and then you get the citrus sweetness. Then the hops return for a good, bitter, hoppy after-taste.
M: Very crisp, medium body, medium carbonation and a clean finish.
D: Its tasty, not filling and goes down easy, especially if youre hop head. This is the type of beer I could drink until closing time.
09-04-2006 00:59:45 | More by TheManiacalOne
4.08/5 rDev +10%
A - Pours with half a finger of off-white foam on top of a slightly hazy, copper colored body. The foam settles fairly quickly but leaves decent lacing on the glass.
S - Lots of fresh, green hop aroma with pine and grapefruit notes. Some bready malt in the background with a hint of toast.
T - Toasted grain and some lightly sweet malt with a hint of grapefruit. More hop flavor comes out in the middle as notes of grapefruit are blended with a little bit of pine. The beer finishes with moderately strong bitterness and some dry toasted flavors as well as lingering grapefruit.
M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and a dry finish.
D - A nice IPA with a very fresh hop aroma and plenty of malt to back it up. Despite finishing quite dry, the toasted character of the malt never becomes acrid and it is drinkable and balanced for its style.
07-22-2011 21:37:39 | More by nickfl
4.05/5 rDev +9.2%
Just brought to the Pittsburgh market I've been meaning to track this one down for some time. Appears a definitive copper tone with a large off white head leaves behind thick stands of lacing , wow! Very nice brewski that has been pushed by many beer publications over the years. Aroma nice citrus peel tones very thick and dominant with touches of hop flowers and mild caramel malt sweetness tones. Taste has a perfect single IPA profile with aggressive grapefruit hops with slightly with slightly sweet biscuit and caramel malt character defintely an expansive list of hops thrown in here very nice brew overall, really balanced. Mouthfeel has a medium body goes down smooth very even carbonation with streaks of hop oils giving me some hop in the single hopped IPA style. Drinkability: Great stuff my pal John and I are contemplating a keg if possible from this NY brewery just entering the Pittsburgh market.
10-05-2006 01:51:24 | More by WVbeergeek
3.98/5 rDev +7.3%
I believe I go this from rpohagan, one thanks Ryan!
Pours an effervescent amber with 1 finger of cream colored head. Above average head retention & lacing
S: Piney & grassy with with citrussy hops, plus some honey malt & orange slices as this warms
T: Citrussy hops. oranges, breadyness & leafy hops up front. Jammyness & leafy hops dominate as this warms. finishes with peppery hops, a nice crispness & a bit fruitty
MF: Medium bodied with low carbonation & good balance.
Drinks pretty easy, Not wild about how the hops blended together in this one, but not a bad AIPA at all
09-06-2008 04:05:21 | More by russpowell
4.22/5 rDev +13.7%
Lightly hazed, golden hue, near orange...big, bone-white head, leaving lace.
Nice, bright, piney, citric nose, some pineapple, banana, even,...pungent stuff!Loads of hops here, very welcome.
Taste: big buzz on the palate, very bright, sunny, citric,...centennials, cascades, who knows what else, but it's all the usual suspects are they're hard at work.
Medium bodied, sparse malt, but just adequate of a mattress for the hops to bounce off of..delicious. Reminds me a bit of Two Hearted Ale from Bell's.
Good drinkability, no flaws perceived, quite a nice IPA, good work, Blue Point.
02-06-2007 06:50:19 | More by feloniousmonk
Hoptical Illusion from Blue Point Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 1,497 ratings.